Below are some of the surprising findings from Bausch + Lomb’s Barometer for Global Eye Health.
A vast majority of people surveyed think they are knowledgeable about eye health issues and proper eye care, but their actions suggest otherwise.
According to those surveyed, vision loss would have a severe negative impact on their quality of life compared to health behaviors/conditions they tended to monitor more closely or participate in more regularly.
If forced to choose, survey participants would give up just about anything to preserve their vision, showing it is truly their most valuable sense.
Many consumers don’t know that their eyes can be indicators of other health elements or issues.
Seven out of ten report that they are knowledgeable about the topic, but only four in ten have had an eye exam in the last 12 months.
Additionally, a sizeable portion of participants admit to falling for common eye health myths / misperceptions, such as “I don’t need an eye test unless there is a problem” (44%), and “If I can see, then my eyes must be healthy” (42%).
60% out of reported that vision loss would have a severe negative impact on their quality of life, compared to 21% who say the same for high blood pressure, 19% for high cholesterol, 23% for poor dental health.
Even though loss of vision poses a greater threat to their quality of life, respondents were actually much more likely to have checked their blood pressure (83%) or gotten a physical (71%), in the last one to two years than they were to get their eyes checked (65%).
An overwhelming number of participants indicated that they would rather lose their sense of taste (79%), hearing (78%), a limb (68%), or even 10 years of their life (67%) than lose their eyesight.
During regular exams, eye care professionals can identify signs of medical conditions that could become serious such as high blood pressure, diabetes and thyroid disease – years before they are evident in other parts of the body.
Globally, a significant number are unaware that the eyes provide a window into their overall health. In fact, nearly 4 in 10 admit to mistakenly believing that the only reason to visit an eyecare practitioner is for vision correction.
The press release is available here.